OAKLAND -- Wearing a Raiders cap and a big smile, an 11-year-old boy wounded last week when a barrage of bullets pierced the walls of his family's home walked back into the house Wednesday afternoon after six days in the hospital.
Luis Dueñas Hernandez was sleeping in his bed when he was struck early Sept. 20 by a bullet, one of an estimated 16 rounds fired at the house on the 200 block of Makin Road.
With his family behind him, holding balloons and presents, Luis walked slowly into the house about 1:25 p.m. Wednesday and sat on the couch, holding his 4-month-old sister, Arleny, and kissing her hand. His 16-year-old brother, Francisco Jr., had covered more than a dozen bullet holes on the home's exteriorwith white plaster while his younger brother was in the hospital.
Luis' mother, Ana Hernandez, said that doctors had decided not to remove the bullet that struck Luis in the torso and lodged in his liver, but that they expected him to recover completely. Luis' father, Francisco Dueñas, said his son had undergone five surgeries while he was in the hospital.
Luis said he was thankful that about 100 people came to visit him in the hospital, even though he was asleep much of the time.
The boy said Wednesday that his injury didn't hurt much and he was happy to be home, but that he doesn't want to sleep in his bed anymore. His 13-year-old sister, Angelina, said she had volunteered her bed and would sleep on the floor for the
"I've been having nightmares, and they've been keeping me up," she said.
Luis entered his room for the first time Wednesday since he was shot there. He paused, appeared to lose his breath and stood there for awhile. Eventually, he reached for a video game, then silently turned around and walked out of the room.
The hail of bullets at 12:59 a.m. Sept. 20 missed 10 others who were inside the blue, ranch-style home. Francisco Jr., who was sleeping beside Luis on the lower mattress of a bunk bed, just barely missed being struck.
"I was sleeping in bed and (I) woke up bleeding," Luis said. "It felt like a big pinch."
Angelina said she came out of her room moments after the shooting and found Luis running in circles, saying "he couldn't take the pain, that he wanted to fall down and just sleep."
The area around Makin Road has seen gang activity, police said, and they looking into that as a possible motive for the shooting. The house may also have been mistakenly targeted, police said. No arrests have been made.
Luis' father, Francisco Dueñas, who works at an Oakland pallet company, said he didn't want his family to live in the house any longer, but added, "(We) have no choice but to stay here right now."
Luis said he would do his best to be brave: "I'm gonna try my best not to be scared about what happened to me," he said.
Police and Crime Stoppers of Oakland are offering up to $10,000 in reward money for information leading to the arrest of the gunman. Anyone with information may call police at 510-238-3821 or a tip line at 510-773-2805 or Crime Stoppers at 510-777-8572 or 510-777-3211.
Staff writers Daniel M. Jimenez and Erin Ivie contributed to this report. Follow Natalie Neysa Alund at Twitter.com/nataliealund.